Researchers at New York University’s Langone Medical Center say Viagra and other sex-enhancing drugs do not increase the risk of melanoma, a type of skin cancer.
Development is seen as good news for sexually active older men.
Melanoma is a dangerous form of skin cancer that can develop like moles and spread to other parts of the body if not detected early.
The researchers analyzed data from five large-scale studies of more than 866,000 users of erectile medication. Although men who used the drugs had an 11 percent higher risk of melanoma, there was no evidence that the drugs cause melanoma.
Researchers blame the link on screening bias, which means that men who take erectile medications are likely to be more health conscious and get a diagnosis of melanoma than their counterparts.
A statement signed by Stacy Loeb, urologist and assistant professor at the university, said that while physicians need to detect the risk of melanoma, they “do not need to add the use of Viagra and similar medications to the screening list.”
“In general, men should continue to be careful about the risk of any skin cancer from excessive exposure to the sun and the use of sun protection.
“Overall, Viagra and other PDE5 inhibitors are safe medications as long as men are not taking nitrates, which carry a risk of lowering blood pressure. Doctors and patients should not worry about taking these medications because of concern by melanoma. ”
The findings were published May 19 in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.